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Taiwan Church News

3312 Edition

August 17 - 23, 2015

Church Ministry

 

After Abe's Speech, Taiwan Feminist Groups Ask Japan An Official Apology To Comfort Women

 

Reported by Lin Yi-yin

 

Though the Japan Prime Minister, Shinzo Abe, was generally reckoned for his well-prepared speech for the 70th anniversary of war end on August 14, his lip service as "engraved in our heart" without any actual pledge to compensate for the suffering of the recruited or enforced comfort women irritated the feminist or human rights groups across Asia.

 

To express their protest to Abe's stance on comfort women, Taipei Women's Rescue Foundation(TWRF) held a rally before Taipei's Interchange Association Japan in the evening on August 14.

 

Ms Hwang Su-ling, chairwoman of TWRF, lamented that it was a 20 years' tug of war with Japan government to make the sexual exploitation of comfort women finally recognized by UN as a systematic sexual abuse in the military. And it was indeed a war crime with the mask of sexual violence, said Hwang.

 

Ms Kan Su-hwa, executive secretary of TWRF, remarked that since the first Korean comfort woman, Kim Hak-sun, stood out to tell the injury and trauma brought to the comfort women on August 14, 1991, this period of tragic history of Asian women would never be forgotten. As the third International Memorial Day of "Comfort Women" - August 14 - was also the day Shinzo Abe delivered his memorial speech, his stance on comfort women deserved to be checked in details, said Hwang.

 

Many feminist and human rights groups in Taipei also came to join into this protest, including The Garden of Hope Foundation, Modern Women's Foundation, Labor Rights Association, Amnesty International Taiwan, Taiwan Women Alliance, Awakening Foundation and etc. Kinds of art performances, like poetry reading, short play, music concert, drama and visual arts, were utilized to commemorate those comfort women alive and deceased. The name of "comfort women" was also proposed to re-named as "enforced sexual slave".

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 
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Taiwan Church News

3312 Edition

August 17 - 23, 2015

Headline News

 

Changhwa County Government Commemorates The 70th Anniversary Of The End Of WWII With An Exhibition

 

Reported by Simon Lin

 

On August 15, Changhwa County Government held an exhibition at Wu-der temple commemorating the 70th anniversary of the end of World War II(WWII). Many elderly Taiwanese veteran soilders, having participated WWII for Japan government, were invited to attend the opening ceremony of this exhibition. Mr Wei Ming-ku, Magistrate of Changhwa County, specially rolled up the historical air-strike alarm, which sounds had been familiar to the Taiwanese 70 years ago, reminding the audience about the terror and anxiety across Changhwa area under the bombing of US air-force in WWII.

 

Holding Lily, a symbol of love and peace, Magistrate Wei expressed that the purpose of this exhibition did not want to celebrate a victory over Japan or a protest toward America, but send a definite No to any war in future and let the next generation have a genuine ever-lasting peace.

 

As this exhibition was the first ever official memorial one held by local government, Dr Tu Cheng-yu, representative of Taiwanese Veteran Soldiers Association, paid an utmost tribute to what Changhwa County Government did for the Taiwanese veteran soldiers recruited by Japan government in WWII. According to a statistics of Japanese government, more than 200,000 Taiwanese were recruited to participate in WWII. Over 30,000 Taiwanese soldiers were dead or missing in the war.

 

Dr. Tu expressed, although the horrifying bombardment across Taiwan island at the end of WWII was impressive in the memory of the Taiwanese, those devastating stories were never mentioned in Taiwan's historical textbooks. In order to witness this period of the bombarded Taiwan, Dr. Tu, a history PhD of NCKU, specially demonstrated dozens of rare photographs diligently collected from National Archives and Records Administration(NARA) of the United States. In the meantime, many historical objects, files and oral documentaries dring WWII were exhibited: manual air-strike alarm, uniforms, caps, un-exploded bomb located at Pitou Township and etc.

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

 

 

Photos by Simon Lin

 
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Taiwan Church News

3311 Edition

August 10 - 16, 2015

Editorial

 

Stand By The Suffered To Show God's Love

 

Every time when the catastrophic disaster occurred, it is also the most busy time that each PCT Church and Society Committee in both local presbytery and general assembly rushed to rescue the inflicted. Based on PCT's confessional faith, these out-reaching committees become the bridge to communicate between the church and the society. They also become the loyal servants in the dimensions of offering physical health, social accommodation and spiritual comfort.

 

PCT's capability to help, care and re-construct have been evidently witnessed in many devastating accidents happened in recent years: domestically, in the cases of Peng-hu airplane crash, Keelung River airplane plunge, Kaohsiung Big Blast, Water Park Inferno and Soudelor Typhoon Disaster, PCT always tried her best to concern about the devastated situations, care for the victims and offer a suitable re-construction plan; overseas, in the cases of 2011 Japan Tohoku earthquake and tsunami, 2013 Philippine Hai-yen Typhoon disaster and 2015 Nepal earthquake, PCT promptly located local churches to offer the first aid and reconstruction support.

 

Usually, when the disaster news gradually vanished from the media's spot light, people's attention weakened, resources contracted and switched to the next site with urgent demands, yet the sounds of those suffered people in previous trauma still calling for help incessantly. So, a complete social service ministry to witness the mighty power of our Lord should not be content on the money or materials donated just after the disaster, a long-term project to accompany these traumatized victims is much more required.

 

The image of standing by the suffered and jointly experiencing the compassion and justice of our Lord becomes a very special mark of PCT. The out-reaching experience, that PCT learned from 2009 Morakot typhoon rehabilitation: from first aid, re-construction and systematic social work, help forge PCT's ministry of social service into a paradigm of the ecumenical churches. PCT even exported her first-hand experiences of social relief and rehabilitation to help Japanese churches after 311 earthquake and tsunami disaster.

 

Making evident God's will and witnessing His mighty power is a major purpose of the church's out-reaching to the society. So, not only limited by emergent social aid and relief, there are still many important issues between church and society: peace and justice in the country , sustainable environmental development and concern for the marginalized. In September, there will be an island-wide social movement of Taiwan Beach Clean-Up and PCT is one of supporting parties.Through a caring love of our environment, this is a opportunity to practice our faith and proclaim our confession that people have "share in God's creation, and have responsibility with Him for taking care of the world"!

 
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Taiwan Church News

3311 Edition

August 10 - 16, 2015

Headline News

 

PCT Care For The Inflicted Aboriginal Churches After Typhoon Soudelor

 

Reported by Lin Yi-ying and Chiu Kuo-rong

 

After the strong typhoon Soudelor swept across Taiwan on August 8, many aboriginal churches were seriously battered. According to the report of PCT's Tayal Presbytery, a rampant mudslide almost destroyed the village of Hbun-ainqumi of Luofu Li at Fusing District, Taoyuan City. It was fortunate that 25 people among 15 families had been evacuated one day before the arrival of this typhoon.


Meanwhile, the bridge and mountain path at 14 kilometers of the road from Taigan to Smangus, located in Jianshi Township of Hsinchu County, was utterly damaged. There were no electricity, drinking water or foods to reach the people of Smangus.

 

Due to the electricity pole lines, from Quei-san Rd. to Chong-che Rd. at Wulai District of New Taipei City, were totally flushed away by mudslide, the whole Wulai District was in a black out. Until the evening of August 9, the villages like Hsin-sien, Hsia-pen and Wu-lai were informed safe. But, it's still a pity that two PCT members of Chong-che village were missing in the devastating mudslide torrent.

 

In the morning on August 10, Rev. Hwang Che-jian, Moderator of Tayal Presbytery, together with his staffs in Tayal Presbytery, walked into the Wulai District to understand the devastated situation and learn the actual demands of those typhoon-inflicted victims. It was a great relief to see three PCT evangelsts, Noray of Fu-san Church, Yukuy of Hsia-pen church and Hsu Jun-hsiong of Hsin-sien church, were all safe.

 

After the site review, Rev. Hwang Che-jan found that the air-borne materials like instant noodle or rations were not what the people needed. Instead, the people desperately demand salt, rice, canned meat and candles, as salt could preserve the food longer and the food like rice and meat could empower more strength in the job of reconstruction.

 

This demand was passed to the joint meeting of Tayal Presbytery, PCT's Church and Society Committee and Aboriginal Mission Committee in the evening on August 10. PCT decided to pay NT$ 100,000 in advance to buy the necessary goods immediately and recruited 40 some aboriginal youth taking these goods to about 200 families in three inflicted churches - Fu-san, Hsia-pen and Hsin-sien - in Wulai District in the morning on August 11.

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 
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Taiwan Church News

3311 Edition

August 10 - 16, 2015

Church Ministry

 

MV Logos Hope Paid Her First Ever Visit To Taichung City in August 2015

 

Reported by Simon Lin

 

The world's biggest ever book-fare vessel, MV Logos Hope, paid her first visit to Taichung on August 13. Through a book-fare over 5,000 titles of educational and Christian books, an experience of real situations in naval life, a drama based on the Prodigal Son in the Bible and an evangelical sharing in a international cafe, 400 voluntary Christian co-workers from over 50 countries shared the good news with Taichung citizens.

 

Mr Lin Chia-lung, Mayor of Taichung City, expressed that he was very pleased to have MV Logos Hope arrived at Taichung to shed this harbor-city with more highlights in nascent international community. As an enthusiastic reading-lover, Mayor Lin encouraged the youth of Taichung City could expand their frontiers of knowledge via contact with MV Logos Hope and her young men and women.

 

Rev. Chuang Hsin-der, pastor of Pan-ting Presbyterian Church, remarked that there were many indexes to evaluate the extent of globalization about one country, but the most important indicator is that whether their citizens could get involved into the international affairs. Taiwan, encircled with oceans, is a very special country without any land border with any other countries, this is why the arrival of MV Logos Hope became a special gift from God to connect Taiwan with the ecumenical community, said Rev. Chuang.

 

MV Logos Hope is a vessel under GBA Ships, e. V. with International Maritime Organization(IMO). The mission of MV Logos Hope is to fulfill the aim of "bringing knowledge, help and hope to the people of the world".

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 

Taichung City Mayor, Mr Lin Chia-lung, took a photograph with the invited guests and church leaders at MV Logos Hope's book-fair open ceremony on August 13, 2015.

Photo by Simon Lin
 
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Taiwan Church News

3311 Edition

August 10 - 16, 2015

Ministry News

 

To Facilitate Rehabilitation, MacKay Memorial Hospital Sets Up Special Outpatient Appointments For The Disabled In Sports

 

Reported by Lin Yi-ying

 

On August 1, MacKay Memorial Hospital(MMH) held the first round of MacKay Cup Table Tennis Contest, inviting former Paralmpics table tennis athlete, Chang Zhe-rong, engaging a friendship competition with MMH's staff, Chu Wei-chong. This performance contest also unveiled special outpatient appointments for the disabled in sports from August in MMH.

 

Dr. Shih Shou-chuang, the next Superintendent of MMH, said: As the spirit of MMH is to care for the marginalized and offer healing to the people in dimensions of the body, mind and soul, offering each patient an integral medical service is the goal of MMH's mission accordingly. Meanwhile, due to the sport is an important part of rehabilitation for the disabled - not only physical health and body control could be enhanced, but also self-confidence and the skill of social interaction be facilitated - MMH decided to start such special outpatient appointments for the disabled in sports from August every month.

 

Dr. Shei Hsiao-fu, visiting staff in the Rehabilitation Department of MMH, remarked that many patients after their urgent operation and treatment seemed to lose their previous habits of regular exercise afterwards, no wonder many chronic illnesses like obesity, high pressure and etc started to fall upon them. This is also the reason why she was engaged to promote a sport habit for the disabled. Now every time when her rehabilitation patients told her, "I just cannot help but play table tennis everyday!", Dr. Shei always felt very much pleased and encouraged.

 

Mr. Liu Ming-tang, Board Director of Taipei Table Tennis Association For The Disabled, points out that the pains and sorrows of the patients with polio or spinal core injury are very miserable and beyond the understanding of the normal people. But, through the periodical sports functioning as a therapy, the disabled would be greatly inspired to walk out of the shadow in their rehabilitation process and connect with the people and their families again!

 

Translated by Peter Wolfe

 
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